Japan’s KDDI expands premium VOD to Smart TVs and iPads

Japanese telco KDDI has expanded its premium video-on-demand service ‘Video Pass’ to iOS devices and Smart TVs, bringing it within reach of its entire mobile customer base across four platforms (TV, PC, tablet and mobile).

The Video Pass service was already available across a wide range of devices including Android phones and tablets as well as PCs and Macs thanks to the implementation of an end-to end online video platform from UK firm Saffron Digital in May 2012.

KDDI's Video Pass service on iPad

KDDI’s Video Pass service on iPad

To deliver the service to Smart TVs, KDDI has launched a new device called the ‘Smart TV Stick’, available at its retail stores around the country.

The device is described as a portable Android OS set-top box the size of a USB stick that can be plugged into a TV’s HDMI input, and comes with the Video Pass application pre-installed, ready to connect to the Internet and start streaming videos.

“We have really valued Saffron Digital’s online video expertise since the launch of Video Pass last year, so it was a natural choice for us to use them to extend our offering to Apple’s iconic mobile devices, and to help launch our Smart TV Stick,” said Tetsuji Fujita, Head of Media Service Planning Section KDDI.

“Having content available across multiple platforms is becoming a ‘must have’ service for mobile operators and Saffron Digital’s comprehensive solution has allowed us to ensure we are giving our subscribers exactly what they want.”

In addition to Hollywood and local film and TV content, the Video Pass service also lets users pause a video on one device then pick it up at the same place on another device, encouraging viewers to use the service outside the home.

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